Daniel Groves was hit and killed by a vehicle as he was helping a motorist stranded on an interstate.
"It is a tragic reminder that people's lives are at stake", said Shoshana Lew, head of the Colorado Department of Transportation. People have been told that if possible, do not get out of the house. Blizzard warnings are raised in Denver, Wyoming, Nebraska, large portions of Dakota, and some areas in western Minnesota. The National Weather Service in an updated outlook Friday said "significant" snowmelt flooding is likely in the valley.
As millions of Americans feel the brunt of a powerful, late season storm, climate experts said the sudden blizzard was no fluke, but a sign of things to come. South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem closed all state offices, and the Red Cross opened shelters in Sioux Falls and Yankton in the eastern part of the state.
The heavy rain that fell on top of melting snow in Plains states this week flowed directly into swollen rivers because most of the ground is still frozen. Weather service forecasts heavy snowfall up to 12 inches in the central and northern plains while flood warnings are up in parts of southeastern South Dakota, Iowa, and eastern Nebraska. "The best place to be is at home and off the roads".More news: James Bond to drive electric Aston Martin in new film - media reports
The "bomb cyclone" contributed to a 100-car pileup on Interstate 25 in Colorado Wednesday, which left over 1,000 drivers stranded on the artery for several hours. City of Lone Tree, Colo.
Nebraska, under a state of emergency since Tuesday night, is trying to cope with historic flooding.
"With the frozen ground and amount of rain our area had, it was just a ideal set of circumstances that led to the flooding we're seeing in Nebraska and Iowa", Fajman said.
Meteorologists call storms like this one a "bomb cyclone", a winter hurricane that forms when the barometric pressure drops 24 millibars in 24 hours. That's what happened in parts of the central US, where just one day before blizzard conditions hit, many areas such as Denver were enjoying sunny weather in the 50s and 60s.More news: Google is going all-in on the squircle icon for the Play Store
A day earlier, the NWS had described the blizzard - previously dubbed a "bomb cyclone" by US meteorologists for its quick, late season punch - as being of "historic proportions" in a post on Twitter.
By Friday, the "bomb cyclone" was 1,183 km away, flooding roads in Iowa, Nebraska and Missouri and heading northeast into Minnesota toward Canada.
On the east side of the low, spring-like conditions and thunderstorms with wind gusts of up to 160 km/h (100 miles per hour) - the equivalent of a category 2 hurricane - spanned across the southern states, including New Mexico and parts of Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.
The storm gained "bomb cyclogenesis" or "bombogenesis" status after its air pressure dropped precipitously within 24 hours, causing wind gusts of almost 100 mph while simultaneously dropping several inches of snow and rain, said Paul Huttner, chief meteorologist for Minnesota Public Radio.More news: Sam Smith Reveals Why He Had Liposuction at Age 12